Learn about some lifestyle habits that lead to increased ear wax production

Earwax is essential to keeping your ears clean and healthy, but too much of it can cause some health issues, or at least be irritating.  Too much earwax  can cause hearing loss, physical discomfort, tinnitus, ear infections and other problems. How much earwax you produce is largely genetic, so it’s not something you have much control over. There are some regular habits that you can change which should improve things if you are struggling with excessive earwax production. 

Why do I have a lot of earwax?

Frequent use of headphones

Contact stimulus is a phrase often used to describe how inanimate objects can trigger earwax production in some people. Items like headphones, earbuds and even hearing aids that contact and rub the ears are the biggest culprits. Essentially, this happens because your ears try to produce more earwax as a way to protect themselves from these objects. If you have excessive earwax and use ear buds then experiment with over ear headphones and see if that reduces the issue. If you use a hearing aid it’s often not possible to replace them, but you may just need to be extra careful about making sure they are clean and sterilized when you place them in your ears every day.

Cleaning your ears too often

The same way ears can be irritated by ear buds, they can also be irritated by cleaning, especially if you do it frequently. There is a reason doctors don’t recommend using cotton swabs - they can irritate and scratch the sensitive skin on the inside of your ears, triggering even more wax production. The frequency of cleaning can also cause excess earwax buildup so cleaning your ears less frequently may actually reduce earwax production.

Incorrect ear cleaning methods

Even with the best of intentions, a safe ear cleaner like hydrogen peroxide or over-the-counter drops can remove too much earwax and leave your ears  dry and irritated. If you notice you produce a lot of earwax and clean your ears daily then try limiting your cleaning to once a week or even once a month and see if your wax production is reduced. 

Exposure to debris and irritants

Just like your sinuses and allergies can be affected by pollen count, your ears and earwax production can be affected by environmental pollution. If you live near a factory that puts out environmental pollutants or work in a dusty workplace. Exposure to  tiny particles can irritate your ears and stimulate extra earwax production. If you suspect this is an issue, protect yourself by wearing hats and ear protection when pollen counts and environmental pollutants are high and limit your time outside.

Check your ears with a ScopeAround otoscope

If you frequently have irritated ears or ear wax build up then it might be a good idea to buy an ear wax removal camera to do the job yourself. ScopeAround was the first company to make an ear inspection camera for consumer use and they have the most experience and customer feedback manufacturing these devices. ScopeAround makes ear cleaning cameras that are stand-alone devices as well as ones that are compatible with iPhone (iOS) and Android mobile devices as well as PC (Windows) or Mac (OSX) computers. Shop ScopeAround digital otoscopes today!